fbpx

Invest in Maldives

a guide for foreign investors

CTL Strategies recognised in 2021 Rankings of Chambers and Partners

CTL Strategies has been ranked in the Chambers Global Guide 2022, published by the Chambers and Partners. Chambers and Partners is an independent research firm that operates in 200 jurisdictions and is commonly referred to as the “gold standard” in the legal profession. Chambers deliver rankings and insight into the world’s leading lawyers and law firms.

The firm’s new ranking in Band 2 this year, marks a significant upgrade for the firm with the firm moving from Band 3 within just two years of its ranking. The Guide remarks that “the team understands the commercial reality of transactions and provides practical legal solutions”.

Recent Updates

29th Amendment to the Goods and Services Tax Regulation

On 27 November 2022, the 29th Amendment to the Goods and Services Tax Regulation (Regulation Number 2011/R-43) was published in the Government Gazette. Below are some notable changes that may have an impact on taxpayers following the amendment.

Submission of GST Returns online

The amendment requires taxpayers that meet any of the following criteria to submit the GST return online via MIRAconnect.

  1. Persons whose past total annual income is equal or more than MVR 2.5 million
  2. Persons who are required under a tax act or regulation to file any tax return online via MIRAconnect.

Amending GST Returns without a formal review process

In addition to the above, the amendment also repealed Tax Ruling TR-2015/G26 (Amending GST returns) which sets out the MIRAs review process in accepting the GST return amendments which leads to a lower tax liability. In this regard, with the 29th Amendment, Amended GST Returns will be accepted by MIRA without a review even in situations where the return amendment leads to a lower GST liability compared to the GST liability declared in the most recent return filed for that period.

Effective date

The amendment takes effect from 27 November 2022.

Seventh Amendment to Employment Act

The Seventh Amendment to the Employment Act (the “Seventh Amendment”)1, gazetted on 21 September 2022, removed the obligation on employers to pay minimum wage to expatriate employees in accordance with the Minimum Wage Order until a compliance date is announced by the Minister of Economic Development (the “Minister”).

Establishment of the minimum wage

The Sixth Amendment to the Employment Act2 provided a comprehensive guideline on the establishment of the minimum wage to be given to employees working in Maldives. Notably:

    1. A Minimum Wage Advisory Board was formed as per the Sixth Amendment  to advise the Minister on the minimum wage to be given to employees with considerations to different business sectors. .
    2. Within 30 days of receipt of the advice of the Minimum Wage Board, the Minister is required to issue an order, determining the minimum wage.
    3. The current minimum wage to employees working in Maldives was established pursuant to the Minimum Wage Order published on 8 November 2021 (the “Order”) by the Minister marking the first time such a determination has been made in Maldives.

Change in law with the Amendment

  1. Although the Order did not include minimum wage determined for  expatriate employees working in Maldives, section 62(g) of the Employment Act3 obligated the employers with expatriate employees to comply with the Order, within 2 years from 22 September 20204.
  2. However, as per the Seventh Amendment, the Minister is required to announce a date of compliance for such employers (with expatriate employees) to comply with the Order, 
  3. The above change removes the statutory time period provided under the Sixth Amendment (i.e. 2 years from 22 September 2022) for the establishment of the minimum wage for expatriate employees, essentially delaying the period until a date of compliance is publicly announced by the Minister.

Effective Date

The Seventh Amendment became effective on 21 September 2022.

Guide

Overview of Tourism Land Rent Regulation

Update

4th Amendment to the Regulation on the Operation of Guesthouses

Guide

Collection & Distribution of Service Charge